The New Orleans Pelicans Monday with a second half rally shot their way to a 123-115 preseason victory over the Bulls.
The Pelicans were led by Chicagoan Anthony Davis with 26 points in 27 minutes and D-leaguer Sean Kilpatrick with 23 points. Bobby Portis led the Bulls with 20 points and 11 rebounds and Doug McDermott added 17 points. Tony Snell had his best preseason game with 15 points, but left late after apparently twisting his ankle.
The Bulls dominated the first half and into the third quarter before soft defense and New Orleans three-point shooting took them to the win. The Pelicans were 11-25 on threes while the Bulls were 11-32.
The Bulls are now 2-2 in the preseason and play Detroit in the United Center Wednesday.
The Bulls again went without Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson, though both should play soon, Noah after a knee contusion last week and Gibson still coming off ankle surgery. There was good news with Derrick Rose back with the team. He is expected to get fitted for a mask and be at practice later this week. So the Bulls again started Kirk Hinrich, Jimmy Butler, Tony Snell, Nikola Mirotic and Pau Gasol. Led by star Anthony Davis, New Orleans broke out to an 18-12 lead as Mirotic was in foul trouble against Davis. But the Bulls shot themselves back in with their threes, five of eight in the first quarter to take a 37-25 lead. With Bobby Portis’ good perimeter shooting and hustle on the offensive boards where the Bulls were dominant, the Bulls flowed to a 20-point lead and led 66-54 at halftime being 13 from Portis and 11 from Aaron Brooks. The Bulls opened the third quarter deftly with back to back jumpers from Gasol to take a 21-point lead. But the Pelicans apparently eyed some fish in the Bulls lineup and began scooping up threes, six of eight in the quarter to take a 91-90 lead after three quarters. The Pelicans then outhustled the Bulls to the boards to open the fourth quarter and got an 11-point lead seven minutes into the fourth quarter.